They say a simple Hello could lead to a million things. Well, in my case it led to nothing but a little embarrassment. It happened in my own wedding. Yes, you heard it right, it happened in my own wedding. I was supposed to be the center of attraction but I became the center of embarrassment, at least for a moment, if not more!
I was all decked up in a heavily gold – embroidered saree, layers and layers of makeup, a fancy hairstyle weighing more than 2 kgs and all sort of gold ornaments from head to toe. Thankfully, the major part of the traditional wedding was over and we were only left with accepting best wishes from relatives and friends. You can call it a mini reception event. With all the tiring ceremonies from early morning, changing sarees five times (yes, we need to change 5 times as per the tradition), and countless relatives, friends and well wishers buzzing around us, I was looking for someone who can get me a bite of a snack and a sip of water. How cruel is it to make the bride and groom eat the last in their own wedding? Whatever!
To add to the frustration, I was getting overwhelmed by the unending queue of well-wishers waiting to come on stage and greet us. With my energy levels going down to bare minimum, my patience was on the verge of betraying me but there was no other option than bearing that plastic smile while many aunties, uncles, mom’s friends, dad’s friends, sister’s friends and God knows who all were busy shaking hands and blessing us. In all this commotion, I clearly remember that at times I really used to get confused whether the people greeting us are from my side or my husband’s side. Well, you can’t blame me for that, after all, Indian wedding’s guest list does include who’s who!! Endless introductions like, ‘This is my school friend’ or ‘Meet my boss – I worked under him from 1994 to 2000’ or ‘Meet Mrs XYZ – she is the aunty of ABC who was in your school, 2 batches ahead of you’ (What?? Why did you even invite her? Oh yes, she must have invited you in her son’s marriage!) by my parents were making me go bonkers. The only relief was either of them was present alongside on the stage to receive guests and introduce them to us.
But there came a moment when my husband and I were alone on the stage and a group of ladies walked in. I was flashing a ear to ear smile (that’s what a bride supposed to do, right?) and was thinking these ladies seem to be my husband’s relatives (obviously, because I couldn’t recognize them). To my horror, the ladies walked up to me and the comedy show started.
One of the ladies seemed like a leader of their group and initiated the conversation
“Thank you Aunty!”
“My God! You have grown up so much!”
I was thinking to myself – yeah, obviously, I wouldn’t be getting married otherwise! But I reciprocated with a very humble smile.
“You were so small when we saw you last. You remember I had given you a biiiiiiiiiiiiiig cadbury chocolate. You used to accompany your mom sometimes to work!“
I was like, “Oh, really? That is so sweet of you Aunty!” But obviously, who remembers a cadbury after 20 years!
And then came the most embarrassing question –
“Do you remember me?” Aunty was so pleased with my polite response to her memory of cadbury that she was almost certain that I have been thinking about her all through my childhood, adolescence and now “grownup” (as she referred to me some moment ago) phase.
Bang on! I got a hint that I am in trouble now. My eyes were frantically looking out for my mom, while my right hand was still held by Aunty as a gesture of a handshake that started right with a hello!
“Of course Aunty!” I replied (not so confidently) because I thought telling her upfront that I don’t know who she is would sound too rude.
“Awww, so sweeeet….” said Aunty pulling my cheek
Arrrghhh… who pulls a cheek of so called grown up girl??? More than that, I was worried that she might just pull out a layer of my makeup. Anyway, I thought, the worst was over. – Aunty was pleased with my response and will soon end the conversation and and proceed towards lunch. But I was wrong! Prompt came her next question and it felt no less than the bomb attack made on Hiroshima and Nagasaki.
“Tell me, who am I?“
OMG!!!! I really didn’t know who the lady was. All I could figure out was that she was some colleague of my mom, that too from very early years of her career. I didn’t know what to say. How I wished my mom would have not moved from my side! Since I was on my own, I made some feeble attempt.
“Well, Aunty, I remember but I cannot recollect…” (What??? Did that sentence even make sense?? What was I saying???)
Aunty was having fun watching me get embarrassed and my husband couldn’t stop giggling. I had no option but to call out for my mom!
Thankfully, I saw my mom reappearing on stage and I heaved a sigh of relief. Then the formal introductions happened and finally the Aunty was satisfied that I finally really recollected who she is and she gladly proceeded for lunch though the truth was, I was still in haze to understand who that aunty really was. Thank God, other ladies from the group were not as enthusiastic as her to test my memory and just chose to be the spectators of my embarrassment rather than embarrassing me more!
I had gone pink in the face and warned my mom not move from my side until the reception is over.
What I learnt from that incident is that some guests can be difficult and tricky to handle. But being sweet to them doesn’t help. Instead, being honest can make it easier for you!
And, I would like to make one request to all of you. If you are going for a wedding of someone in distant relation or acquaintance, please, please introduce yourself to the bride and the groom. For God’s sake, do not quiz them about your identity, they have bigger things to think about!
I feel proud to be a woman and I am sure all you ladies must be feeling the same!
Few things come naturally to women as compared to men. Like the power to emphathise, the giving nature and a relatively high emotional quotient. Not that men do not have it… but women surpass them naturally. There is no creature as versatile as a woman. She is a daughter, girlfriend, wife, friend everything at the same time. She can be the best mother not just to her child but at times to her husband as well. She can be irresistibly sexy as a girlfriend and extremely nagging wife, both at the same time. She can be hopelessly headstrong but the same woman can be super mature to handle difficult situations at ease. She can be your backbone and break your bone at the same time! A woman is just amazing!!
God has made women after lot of thinking perhaps! Otherwise how could he pack so many blessings in just one body? The seducing beauty, a beautiful mind and a heart full of love are few of those blessings. However, the biggest blessing of being a woman is able to give birth. This is so unique that no man would ever be able to do it. No man would be able to take that pounding in order to create and nurture a new life inside the body for whole 9 months! No man will ever be able to take that pain when nipples are squezed and chewed in order to fill the tummy of a small life.
Hey Woman…. You Are Great, Not Just Today But Everyday! Be aware of this fact and never get into gender fights. No gender is superior or inferior. Just also know that how much ever special you are, you cannot be superior to a man. Nor can he be superior to you. You both complete each other. You both need each other to make life more beautiful.
Lastly, I would say, do not wait for a single day to celebrate womanhood. Celebrate everyday. Be good, do good. pamper urself. Love yourself. Every single day!!
Remember, You Are Great, Not Just Today But Everyday!